Earlier this week I wrote a post about the many similarities between Wichita, Kansas and Oklahoma City (Edmond). As you have probably heard by now Boeing will be relocating many of their engineers to Oklahoma City from their Wichita plant in a year or so. Since then I’ve had the chance to visit with a friend of mine who is from Derby, Kansas. I wanted to know more than just the demographics and census data I found. She explained to me that Derby is just outside of Wichita and was actually pretty similar to Edmond in a lot of ways. Like Edmond, Derby has had explosive growth during the last 10-15 years. She told me it’s hard to tell where Wichita ends and Derby begins. Sounds a lot like Edmond and Oklahoma City. I had to check it out.
I found that there really a lot of things the two towns have in common. Since I can be a bit of a nerd, there was one piece of trivia that caught my attention. I read that Derby was originally named El Paso. But to eliminate confusion with El Paso, Texas the town’s name was changed to Derby after a local railroad official. Well strange as it sounds, following the land-run, our town was named Edmond after a railroad freight agent. The train still chugs right through the middle of Edmond a couple times a day.
If you are among the Boeing engineers moving to our area next year, you probably want to know a bit more than how the two towns got their names! You might be interested in knowing that living in Edmond will be a lot like living in Derby. You’ll want to be assured that you and your family will feel right at home. So here goes;
- Schools: Within Derby Public Schools there are 9 elementary schools, a sixth grade center, a middle school and a high school. Within Edmond Public Schools there are 16 elementary schools, 5 middle schools, 3 freshman academies (new to our system in the last four years), and 3 high schools.
- Shopping: Like Derby, Edmond has a Kohls and Walmart. Unlike Derby, we do not have a Kmart. It closed several years ago and is now an Academy store. I understand that in Derby many folks go over to Bradley Fair in Wichita to shop at stores like Francesca’s, Jos A Bank, White House Black Market, Chicos, Coldwater Creek, Talbots, and Loft. All of those stores and more can be found right here in Edmond at the popular Spring Creek Plaza. Mall and outlet mall shopping is also available with about a 20 minute drive.
- Attractions: A few popular Derby attractions include the Derby Historical Museum, the Derby Open Air Market, the Derby Skate Park, and Rock River Rapids. Edmond has all that too! When you come you will want to check out the Edmond Historical Society and Museum (you can learn more about how Edmond got it’s name), the Festival Market Place, Mathis Skate Park, and Pelican Bay Aquatic Center.
- Annual Events: I learned that there are several annual events that Derby residents look forward to each year like Derby Days and the 4th of July. Edmond residents look forward to Libertyfest, Taste of Edmond, Arcadia Eagle Watch and the Storybook Forest at Halloween.